Oware, Matthew K., Ph.D.
Sociology and Anthropology, Asbury Hall, Room 306
Professor of Sociology (on leave)
I am Full Professor of Sociology at DePauw University. I received my Ph.D. in 2002 from Indiana University in Bloomington. I served two terms as chair of the Sociology and Anthropology department from 2010 to 2016. In 2008, I was the recipient of the George and Virginia Crane Distinguished Teaching Award given to faculty members who exemplify excellence in teaching. In 2016, I received the Edwin L. Minar Jr. Scholarship Award, which recognizes exceptional scholarly achievement by a faculty member. At DePauw, I teach a variety of courses including Contemporary Society, Methods of Social Research, Senior Seminar, Sociology of Popular Culture, Sociology of Hip Hop, Race and Ethnic Relations in the United States, and Masculinities, among others.
My primary research focuses on the constructions of racialized and gendered identities in popular culture, Black masculinity in African-American expressive culture, and the Black family in American society. Specifically, I have analyzed how popular male rap artists address notions of fatherhood and masculinity in their music. I have also examined, via content analysis of rap songs, how underground white rap artists engage in racial evasion while simultaneously perpetuating aspects of hegemonic masculinity. Overall, my work tends to center on the intersections of race, class, and gender in popular culture, incorporating theoretical frames such as Black Feminism, Bourdieu’s notion of restricted and large-scale capital, hegemonic masculinity, and colorblind racism.
I have published my research in the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, Journal of Black Studies, Poetics: Journal of Empirical Research on Culture, the Media and the Arts, the Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, and the Journal of African American Studies, among others.
I have also served as a consultant for community organizations working with marginalized and indigent groups in Indianapolis, Indiana.